Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Things I Hate About Querying

Besides, you know, everything.

1. Synopses.
I have to write about the book. Why is it so impossible? It took me more than a year to write the book and get it to the point that it was good enough to be seen. And I would do it all over again if I didn’t have to write a synopsis. Is it even possible to write one that doesn’t stink?

2. Getting rejected.
As of yesterday, I’ve sent out ten queries. I’ve only had two responses. Both within two days of the query. Both rejections. People can talk about “thick skin” and staying positive all they want. That doesn’t make it any less of a kick to the teeth.

3. No response at all.
Agents are busy, so I’m not against non-responding. But it’s still anxiety inducing.

4. Screwing up.
Oh, man, ten queries, and I forgot to paste in the sample pages TWICE. A twenty percent screw up rate is not good! I put “PASTE IN PAGES” at the end of my query (plus I highlighted it) so now I won’t forget. I hope.

5. Snail mail.
There are still agents who insist on being queried by snail mail. Heck, there are agencies without websites. Is this what it was like back in the before-time, the ancient era when there were those huge, clunky computers that could only type words (I’ve heard them called “type-writers”)? What a frightening time that must have been.

This post brought to you by: venting.


  1. I had to type on typewriters without correction tape - the horror!

  2. You have to wonder about a publisher who isn't online. Does that mean they don't do ebooks?

  3. I messed up a couple queries by failing to attach all the correct documents -- no matter how many times I checked.

    And I'd be a little leery of agents who still operate by snail mail. You want an agent who is up to date with electronic communication!

  4. In the before-time? I see you're a Mad Max fan...

    Whoever devised the notion of the synopsis should be subjected to a painful, excrutiatingly drawn out death. Post haste.

  5. Oh my goodness, I know what you mean! You can be careful and think you've done everything right, but there comes a point where your brain is just mush and you can't remember if you even typed the agent's name right!

  6. These are just some of the reasons I didn't do it. Hang in there.

  7. You'll get there.

    And yeah, a synopsis is a punishment, not a good use of time.

  8. Oh My Goodness!! I was catching up on blogs and just spotted this post. First of all... you're querying! Second... I agree with all of these! Oh man, writing a book is easy and fun and wonderful. Then you begin querying. Um, not any of these things.
    Synopsis... If I could have written the story in two pages, I would have. But it took 60-80K words, that's why I wrote that many.
    I don't know about you, but I see the snail mail ones and walk away. Sorry, not going there.
    Feeling for you and wishing you many responses. (The good ones are an amazing high!) Can you see why I went to self-publishing? I might never go back :)


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